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Old 10th April 2015
Lives for gear
aaeronn's Avatar

Pretty much every industry that was originally analog based and now has a digital equivalent has been impacted (audio production & engineering, photography, video production). Essentially it comes down to commoditization and accessibility. When an affordable digital equivalent becomes available to a previously expensive analog based product/industry, you have many more people jumping in due to the low-cost of entry.

Prior to the introduction of high quality digital cameras, you had to deal with film. Film costs $$$ - the initial purchase price, development of the negatives and production of prints by a lab. If you developed and printed your own film, factor in the cost of chemicals, photo printing paper and the related equipment . Also, being a physical medium, it requires significant storage space if you shoot and print a lot. Digital photography eliminated most of the ancillary costs - once you buy the camera, memory card(s) (and maybe a photo printer) - you're done. If you print your own photos, the only recurring costs are for ink and photo paper. Digital also allows for a certain laziness on the part of the photographer. Hold down the shutter button, take a dozen shots, pick the best one and delete the rest - can't really do this with film since all those throw away shots cost money. Add in the fact you can immediately see if your shot was good with digital - with film, you had to have greater knowledge of the photographic process since you didn't get to see the results until the negatives were developed.

Same applies to video production and editing - no expensive tape based cameras and editing suites required - fire up the cheap camcorder or dslr and final cut pro.

Hell, digital industries are even cannibalizing digital industries now. Before cloud computing services were available, companies purchased physical servers and installed them in racks at colocation facilities or data centers. Now, they sign up for an Amazon/AT&T/Microsoft cloud service account and deploy a bunch of virtual servers. No physical infrastructure cost. OS virtualization enables deployment of multiple servers running concurrently on one hardware platform whereas before you needed one hardware box to run one server OS. All kinds of SAAS (software as a service) providers exist now where before a company would need to purchase, install and maintain systems to provide customer resource management (customer tracking and support ticketing), payroll & HR functions, training resources, etc... - all of that gets outsourced now.

top talent will still command top dollar - it's the mid-range that's been impacted by the influx of affordable digital alternatives

enough rambling

Last edited by aaeronn; 10th April 2015 at 03:54 AM..